• Drug Addicts & Their Enablers

    An enabler is someone who intentionally or unintentionally assists an addict in continuing his or her drug or alcohol use by engaging in behaviors that they mistakenly think will help the person.

    However, in reality, enablers are doing the addict great harm and in some ways are just as responsible for their behavior as the addict themselves.  The Colorado State University describes the enabler as the person who allows substance abuse to continue by “saving” the abuser from the consequences of his or her actions.

    Enablers are often but not always family members. They can be neighbors, friends, co-workers, or even teachers. A person who is struggling with a drug addiction problem comes to expect the assistance of their loved ones who are enablers. When it comes to the point where enablers cannot yield the support that the addicts need, they will often begin to experience the wrath of that person who has a drug addiction problem.

    Below are some common examples of enabling drug addiction:

    • Typical enablers tolerate addicts’ drugging ways, while giving them the confidence of knowing that someone will always be available to rescue them from their mistakes.
    • Many enablers will even indirectly begin to provide drugs for the addict, through the act of giving them money – which is the lifeblood of any type of addiction.
    • Some enablers have been known to directly get drugs for the user because they assume they’ll simply acquire them elsewhere if they don’t.
    • Other enablers may assist the addict in criminal activities by lying for them because of their fear of losing the addict to imprisonment.
    • Repeatedly bailing the addict out of jail is something that enablers will often do. Instead of letting them face the consequences of their negative behaviors, rescuing an addict will only aid them to be more comfortable in their addiction.
    • Some enablers simply pretend like there is no problem at all and allow chronic addiction to continue unabated for years or even decades.
    • Completing tasks for a person with a drug addiction problem is also something that many enablers will do, particularly parents. For example, finishing school projects for their drug addict child so that he or she does not have to experience the negative consequences that occur because of their poor behavioral choices. In this case, expect little reason for them to begin to make positive changes.

    The enablers play a crucial role in addicts’ recovery, considering the immense influence they have on the addicted individual. But sad to say, drug users are much easier to fix than their enablers and that is the major reason why rehabilitation fails. It just isn’t profitable. Fixing the addicts but excluding the enablers just won’t work. Understanding the enabler’s role and how it can be reversed is critical for anyone who wants to permanently break the cycle of drug abuse. It is important to recognize that the enabler’s actions only serve to allow a person with a drug addiction problem to be able to continue in their destructive behavior patterns.





    Categories: Substance Abuse

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